A Gardener's Delight
We ask God to give you complete knowledge of his will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding. Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better. (Colossians 1:9-10)
The moment we say 'yes' to Jesus, this 'grow as you learn' thing begins to happen. We might 'know' a little bit about God from what he has created, for creation speaks of him all around us. We might 'know' something about him because we went to church as a kid and heard 'things' about what he had done in the past. This walk with Jesus really begins in earnest once we move from just knowing 'things' about God into a place of really learning from him directly.
Good fruit is produced at the hand of a skilled gardener. I have tried my hand at planting this or that in the 'garden', but I must not be a gardener. In truth, what I am not - a patient, attentive worker in the garden. I can prepare the soil, bring home the seedlings, plant them, ensure they have water, and then I kind of leave it be. I forget it needs tending. Leaves need nipped, soil needs to be loosened, bugs need to be sprayed away, and buds need to be pollinated.
It is a good thing God is not a gardener who 'plants' and then 'forgets' to tend. He spends a tremendous amount of time 'tending' the garden of our hearts because he is looking for the very best harvest of fruit. Things in our character that will honor and please him are being produced - to neglect such good fruit would be terrible. We might not even realize the fruit is there in our lives, because just like in my raised garden beds, some of the greatest finds have been behind the leaves in my garden.
Prepared soil will not always ensure a good harvest. Tended gardens are what produce the ample harvest that will keep us well-nourished and 'healthy' for a good long time. Nothing please God more than asking to have the 'garden of our hearts' tended under his watchful and skillful hand. Just sayin!